1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp water
1/4 cup salted butter, diced into 1 Tbsp pieces
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 tsp fine sea salt or 3/4 tsp Maldon, more to taste if desired
Gather all of your ingredients and have them nearby ready to add to the mixture as needed. In a heavy-bottomed 2 – 3 quart saucepan (something that isn’t dark on bottom so you can see the shade of caramel), heat sugar and water over medium-high heat whisking constantly to dissolve sugar. Once mixture reaches a boil, stop whisking and allow mixture to boil until it reaches a dark amber color, carefully swirling pan occasionally (this will take time, so be patient. It will first bubble vigorously and steam and it will be a clear shade, then bubbling will continue but the bubbles will become smaller and slower and it will slowly tint yellowish, then orangish, then a deep reddish orange and that is what you are looking for). Once mixture reaches a dark amber color, immediately add butter and whisk until butter has melted then immediately remove from heat. Carefully pour in cream and immediately whisk to combine (it will bubble vigorously). Whisk until mixture is smooth. Stir in sea salt. Pour caramel into a glass jar to cool. Once cool, store in an airtight container in refrigerator.